Abandoned in deep space brings some together while driving others over the edge, but that is just the beginning of their troubles…
One hundred and fifty years in the future humans are finally reaching out to the stars. Though capable of deep space travel humanity is still an infant among the void and things can go horribly wrong in the blackness of infinity.
The crew of the Valkyrie awakens from their cryogenic sleep early - months early. The Valkyrie wasn’t made for long-term habitation, a cargo carrier engineered to be lived in for only a few hours on each side of a transport run. Now the crew is forced to learn to live together in an environment where the average room is the size of a closet and the corridors almost touch their shoulders as they pass. Two of the crewmembers are drawn together in a closeness they never thought they would find, but the other crewmember falls over the edge of sanity in the face of the cold void surrounding them. Dwight and Victoria soon realize that the tight quarters are the least of their problems…
Vicky told him about her career as a medical officer. She talked about her hectic four-year training at the Armstrong medical facility on the moon. They laughed as she told him of some of her more colorful instructors and the occasional pranks the students would play on one another. Dwight perked up when she talked about Daniel Destephano, the man she almost went into a two-year marriage contract with.
“Why didn’t you marry him? It’s obvious that you liked him. Did you get a high dollar contract to ship out that messed it up, or maybe it’s the commitment that you don’t care for?”
Vicky smiled and squinted her eyes. “Are you teasing me?”
False shock and indignation flooded Dwight’s face. “Moi? Never!”
She laughed. “Okay, since you weren’t teasing me, I’ll tell you. I caught him in bed with my best friend.”
He cringed. “Ouch.”
“Ouch is right. Daniel and my friend apologized over and over again, claiming that it was a momentary lapse in judgment. I didn’t care. He had hurt me and so had my best friend. He’s the reason I started taking these deep space runs after graduation. I didn’t want to be around anyone, and I figured the deep space runs were the best way to do that. It’s what I’ve been doing ever since.”
Vicky pulled her feet from the straps, grabbed Dwight’s arm, and swung herself around until she hovered in front of him. “Okay, Mr. Larson. Do you have any loves of your life that you would like to share with me?”
Oh, hell no! He thought. All of his loves had begun late in the night at a bar and ended as soon as he woke up the next morning. His relationships were nothing to brag about, at least not with her. “There’s really nothing to tell. I’ve dated, but that’s it. I guess I’ve never been in any place long enough to have a relationship.”
“That’s kind of sad.”
Yeah, tell me about it.
“If we make it through this, do you think you and I might have one?”
Dwight put his hand in hers. Their fingers interlocked and squeezed. “First off, it is when we make it through this. Secondly, the last few days with you have been the closest thing I’ve had to a relationship in years. I like it and would like to see more of it.”
She squeezed his hand and smiled then leaned forward and gave him a coy kiss on the lips. Their lips touched for only a second, but the feeling lingered. It was a good feeling. It touched him inside with an emotion that he hadn’t felt in years if ever. He released her hand and slipped his arm around her waist. His head tilted forward. Her eyes closed and her lips parted slightly.